Brazil’s Jair Bolsonaro Says He Tested Negative for Coronavirus

Son Eduardo Says Media Outlets Are Spreading 'Fake News'
March 13, 2020 Updated: March 13, 2020

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro announced he tested negative for the Wuhan coronavirus, which causes the disease COVID-19, on Friday following reports that claimed he had tested positive after his spokesman was confirmed to have contracted the virus.

On his Twitter account, Bolsonaro made the confirmation. His son, Eduardo Bolsonaro, also wrote that the “result for [Bolsonaro] for coronavirus … was NEGATIVE.”

A report from a Brazilian newspaper made the claim that he tested positive for COVID-19, which was disputed by the younger Bolsonaro.

“Too much lies and little information,” he wrote on Twitter on Friday morning. “Coronavirus exam done with the team that were with JB in USA have not yet been completed There are always those people who tell lies in the media and if the story is confirmed they say ‘I told you!’ if not will be just 1 more fake news.”

His press secretary, Fabio Wajngarten, tested positive for the virus earlier this week. They had dinner with President Donald Trump at Mar-a-Lago over the weekend, and photos showed the Brazilian president meeting with Trump during their dinner. He also shook hands with him afterward.

Trump has dinner with Jair Bolsonaro
President Donald Trump (C) speaks with Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro (L), alongside national security adviser Robert O’Brien (R) during a dinner at Mar-a-Lago in Palm Beach, Fla., on March 7, 2020. (Jim Watson/AFP via Getty Images)

Wajngarten, meanwhile, had posted a photo standing near the president while holding and wearing “Make Brazil Great Again” hats.

It came after Brazil’s government said he was being tested and monitored for the virus, which emerged in Wuhan, China, late last year before spreading across its borders to more than 100 other countries.

The Trump administration also confirmed that Trump was with Bolsonaro and Wajngarten.

“The White House is aware of public reports that a member of the Brazilian delegation’s visit to Mar-a-Lago last weekend tested positive for COVID-19; confirmatory testing is pending,” Grisham said in a statement. “Exposures from the case are being assessed, which will dictate next steps. Both the President and Vice President had almost no interactions with the individual who tested positive and do not require being tested at this time.”

“As stated before, the White House Medical Unit and the United States Secret Service has been working closely with various agencies to ensure every precaution is taken to keep the First & Second Families, and all White House staff healthy,” she added. “To reiterate CDC guidelines, there is currently no indication to test patients without symptoms, and only people with prolonged close exposure to confirmed positive cases should self-quarantine.”

Trump said this week that he was told about Wajngarten contracting the virus.

“We had dinner together in Florida, at Mar-a-Lago, with the entire delegation,” Trump told McClatchy. “I don’t know if the press aide was there, if he was there, he was there. But we did nothing very unusual.”